IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Worker replacement and cost-benefit analysis of life-saving health care programs, a precautionary note


  • Tessier, Philippe
  • Sultan-Taïeb, Hélène
  • Barnay, Thomas


The assumption according to which ill individuals can be replaced at work that underpins the 'friction cost method' (FCM) to value productivity costs has been primarily discussed within the framework of cost-utility analysis. This paper investigates the consequences of this assumption for cost-benefit analysis (CBA). It makes three contributions. First, it provides the first analytical account of the overall consequences of ill worker replacement on social welfare and it analyzes the associated compensation effects within a CBA framework. Second, it highlights a double counting problem that arises when ill worker replacement is assumed in the CBA of life-saving health care programs. To the best of our knowledge, no satisfactory solution to this problem has yet been provided in the literature. Third, this paper suggests and discusses two original ways to address this double counting issue. One consists in adjusting value of a statistical life estimations for the well-being provided by future incomes. Another possibility lies in the estimation of marginal rates of substitution between health and wealth so as to directly monetize the value of life over and above consumption. We show that both solutions raise unresolved questions that should be addressed in future research to enable appropriate use of the FCM in CBA.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Tessier, Philippe & Sultan-Taïeb, Hélène & Barnay, Thomas, 2014. "Worker replacement and cost-benefit analysis of life-saving health care programs, a precautionary note," Health Economics, Policy and Law, Cambridge University Press, vol. 9(02), pages 215-229, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:hecopl:v:9:y:2014:i:02:p:215-229_00

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:hecopl:v:9:y:2014:i:02:p:215-229_00. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.